The University of Minnesota football team dropped to 0-4 at home this season, which hasn’t happened since 1983. But despite that, the last few years have provided a pretty similar story line.
Sports Illustrated’s Joe Posnanski is one of this country’s brilliant sports writers. Everyone knows I’m a big fan of his, and I consider his appearance on “Sports Talk” to be one of my favorite moments in that show’s brief life.
One of the many great points that Posnanski has made over the years that has stuck with me was about the Kansas City Royals. I’m not sure if I can find the link, but you can read all of Posnanski’s work here.
Posnanski said one of the problems with the Royals is that they’re not about anything. If a small-market team is to survive, it must be about something. The Oakland A’s were about “Moneyball” which worked for awhile. The Minnesota Twins are about strike-throwing pitchers and reliable defense. The Royals a year or two ago said they were going to be about on-base percentage, but then proceeded to add such great OBP gems as Yuniesky Betancourt and Jason Kendall. At one point they had four of the eight or nine worst OBPs in the majors in their starting lineup.
Anyway, back to the Gophers. One of their many problems is their offense from year to year seems to have no direction. Under Glen Mason, it was obvious that the offense was about big, talented offensive lineman with dynamic running backs who could run the football. Move the chains.
The Gophers this year appear to be heading back to those days, but only after having different pass-happy stretches that at one time included the spread offense.
It’s one thing to tailor your offense to the personnel you have. But the problem is it never seems to work, and it just leaves the team going nowhere. How many different coordinators has Adam Weber played for as Minnesota QB?
Can you blame Tim Brewster for that? Probably not. Coordinators come and go, and despite the Gophers lack of success, people keep wanting to take them away.
I just think the Gophers need to establish some sort of continuity. Hindsight is 20-20, but they should have stuck with the Mason formula.
Now, I’m sure you’re thinking my call for continuity means I think Brewster should say. That isn’t so. I think they need continuity, but I’m not sure if where there at right now is a proper starting point.